A common sub-cortical system for human eye and limb control? (2017–2021)
The capacity to produce fast and accurate visually-guided movement was crucial for survival long before animals evolved a cerebral cortex, suggesting that basic control systems may be conserved across species. This project will test the extent to which the human brain controls reaching movements via structures and control mechanisms known to be used for rapid eye movements, and for prey capture by lower vertebrates such as fish. The notion that complex, human limb movements can be controlled by primitive sub-cortical systems challenges conventional thinking about movement-related brain activity, and has important implications for the design of human-machine interfaces and training protocols in rehabilitation, industry and sport.